Sunderland carer spared jail after distributing sick images of children being abused

A carer who distributed images of children being abused has kept his freedom.

Monday, 15th March 2021, 4:11 pm

Alexander Savins had "peer to peer" software installed on his computer, which meant other online users could view items that he shared.

Newcastle Crown Court heard using the facility, the 52-year-old distributed a total of 11 images of child abuse.

The court heard five were of the most serious category and the images shared included pictures and videos.

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The case was heard at Newcastle Crown Court.

Police also found a collection of seven category A images, which is the most serious, three category B and 15 category C during a search of his devices after they attended Savin's home at Patterdale Street, Hetton with a warrant in September 2018.

Prosecutor John Wilkinson said one of the children featured in Savins' collection appeared to be eight-years-old and others ranged between age 10 and 14.

Savins pleaded guilty to two charges of distributing indecent photographs of children and three charges of making indecent photographs of children.

Helen Towers, defending, said Savins had "unwittingly" distributed the images due to the nature of the software he had installed.

Miss Towers said: "He didn't intend and didn't know they had been distributed."

Miss Towers said Savins, who has never been in trouble before, was previously married and is now a carer for a female friend who has a number of health problems.

She added: "Prison isn't going to address the defendant's behaviour.

"He felt isolated and this is what led to the offending."

Judge Stephen Earl sentenced Savins to two years imprisonment, suspended for two years with rehabilitation requirements.

Savins must sign the sex offenders register and abide by a sexual harm prevention order for ten years.

Judge Earl said he had "very little sympathy" in relation to the idea that the material had been shared unwittingly and said it is down to the user of peer to peer software to to know what is being distributed.

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